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March 3, 2008 9:15 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to see a place where users can submit FPP requests to the general MeFi populace, and where users can respond at their will to said requests.

I enjoy learning about subjects through MeFi FPP's and their threads. It feels much more dynamic than just reading a Wiki page or just netscouring myself. MeFites take me to unexpected places, which is something I've really cherished about MeFi.

I can see where a Pony like this can be construed as more of a "wanting to steer" than "going with the Me-Fi-Flow," but I find that even where the subject matter is something I think I know, you lot always surprise me in opening another door, another window to let the soft scent of the neighbor's fabric softener in.

So, say, I think to myself upon writing that, "I'd like to see an FPP of cool-ass 1970's or 1980's commercial product iconography,"* and I could post it somewhere, I bet someone out there would totally pick up the ball and run with it, all MeFi-style, dodgin' tight ends and snarky comments, going... all... the... way...! And I'd be all, like, in the bleachers goin' YEAH!! with about a dozen to maybe a couple hundred others.

That star could be YOU!!

*Simulated FPP request on closed course by professional driver.
posted by not_on_display to Feature Requests at 9:15 PM (58 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

I Disapprove of this feature. Metafilter is not your personal army.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 9:19 PM on March 3, 2008


No, but AskMe is, but not in a more free-form way.
posted by not_on_display at 9:24 PM on March 3, 2008


[Shakes head reprovingly]
posted by Your Disapproving Father at 9:39 PM on March 3, 2008 [3 favorites]


I think this is an excellent idea, and I'd like to get the ball rolling! I hereby request an FPP on the little-known but very influential R&B scene that thrived in ancient Egypt's Middle Kingdom (11th-14th Dynasties). All I know is that it started when Pharoah Amenemhat the First founded his new royal residence near Memphis.

Extra points for YouTube links with good audio.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:39 PM on March 3, 2008


So, say, I think to myself upon writing that, "I'd like to see an FPP of cool-ass 1970's or 1980's commercial product iconography,"* and I could post it somewhere, I bet someone out there would totally pick up the ball and run with it, all MeFi-style, dodgin' tight ends and snarky comments, going... all... the... way...!

I think this is a silly suggestion.

If you want to see an FPP, there's Google, Youtube, Technorati, Archive.org, Wikipiedia, etc.

Have at it.
posted by jayder at 9:44 PM on March 3, 2008


So silly, it just might work! eh? eh?

I guess I'm saying, I could look up all those things for myself, but through FPPs and threads, I am usually exposed to more or different things than I would have thought to look for myself, and I like what MeFites find.

I don't think it's silly. I just phrased it all silly-like. Now you all are being the sillies! I want a pony and nobody... snif... *disables account*
posted by not_on_display at 10:01 PM on March 3, 2008


Yeah, sometimes the very best way to discover more about a subject that interests you is to try to construct the FPP. You may not be the world's expert at first, but after evaluating about 10 Google pages of results and selecting the most helpful 5 links, you will be doing pretty well.

And then, after you post the FPP, the 4th comment will be by someone who legitimately is the world's expert on your topic. They will both school you and add to/reframe your content. They will be glad that your thread brought them out of expert-lurking mode, and everyone else will be gratified to learn that World's Expert is on MeFi, and the thread will be a good compendium of the most important links on the topic, archived forever and ever, amen.

It's a win-win-win-win to research and compose an FPP you don't know much about to begin with. As long as you find some substantive links for people to look at and respond to, you're good, and the conversation is likely to take care of the rest.
posted by Miko at 10:01 PM on March 3, 2008 [3 favorites]


Christ, how hard can it be to use teh Google-fu?
posted by KokuRyu at 10:09 PM on March 3, 2008


I'd like some information on grandfather clocks. Cortex would like an update on Guru Dev and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
posted by Meatbomb at 10:22 PM on March 3, 2008


I was.... totally ready to jump in and support this idea with all my lazy little heart, until I saw all the disapproval. Now I'm questioning my own intelligence.

Baa.

But no, seriously, I think this is an awesome idea and I don't really understand the aggressive criticism here.
posted by Phire at 10:24 PM on March 3, 2008


I'd like some information on grandfather clocks

Start with a search on "tall case clocks," their real name. "Grandfather Clock" came from the 1900-era song "Grandfather's Clock," which was too tall for the shelf ...the clocks weren't called grandfather clocks when they were made, only after the popularization of the song.

I'm in favor of a grandfather clock post.
posted by Miko at 10:25 PM on March 3, 2008 [3 favorites]


Anything ever happen with your laptop, Meatbomb? That question was featured on the last podcast in case you missed it.
posted by puke & cry at 10:26 PM on March 3, 2008


Seconding Miko. I think that... hey, why am I shouting myself down? Seconding what Phire said.

That's half of why I construct FPP's sometimes, Miko, only not so much the "getting schooled" aspect but the reframing aspect. But also, there's the aspect I like about shared experience, which I find brings out the best in MeFites. Whether a debate is sparked, or if something is controversial, is less important to me when I'm accumulating a post. And I do learn something in researching.

But if I hammered everything I was interested in into an FPP, I'd have no time to do anything else. And MeFi is usually my first (and sometimes only) stop on the web throughout the day, so it's like I'm asking a community, "Hey, anyone wanna school us on floral arrangements from other planets?" and then someone does a Jim Woodring FPP, or whatever, you get my point, I'd be more likely to be not the 4th commenter, but say the 15th or so saying, hey, that was neat, thanks, and did you also know that floral arrangements have been found in crashed UFO's, etc. etc. etc.
posted by not_on_display at 10:44 PM on March 3, 2008


This is not what Metafilter has ever been for. I am not automatically against change, but I don't think this would be a change in a direction that makes a whole bunch of sense for the site. Serendipity is better than homework.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:51 PM on March 3, 2008


Who says he got it back and this isn't some BC customs dude fucking with you?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:59 PM on March 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, this is a no-go. Part of the fun is the research; if a MeFi thread interests you it should be considered a jumping off point so you can go off and learn. This isn't a Wikipedia-by-request site.

My 3 cents.
posted by Salmonberry at 10:59 PM on March 3, 2008


Also, while I can understand folks' reluctance, why not just put a list of 'Cool Things I'm Interested And Would Like To See FPP'd' on your profile page? It's been a while since I've made one, and could do with the inspiration.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:01 PM on March 3, 2008 [2 favorites]


I lack knowledge in the history of MeFi and how it evolved and developed branches like AskMe and MeMu, but was MetaFilter ever "meant" for those? If you think of MeFi as a community, sort of a pooled resource, AskMe is a kick ASS place to get a good spectrum of thoughtful, experienced answers. What if you don't have a specific question, though?

Serendipity is better than homework. This fits well with my utopian, twinkly vision of how something like this would work: answers open up new windows iof inquiry for the OP. My dystopian version would be that it could be used to troll, in which case dystopia is a headache for the sysops; or that it would be flooded with watery requests. However, what defines a watery request, I think, would become apparent upon use, and there would be some sort of equilibrium established.
posted by not_on_display at 11:11 PM on March 3, 2008


It's a good idea. I don't think it's really against the spirit of MetaFilter. No one that doesn't want to participate doesn't need to do so. It does seem unlikely that the staff will want to work on it because if it's going to be on MetaFilter itself, the implementation has to be close to airtight, and it's a lot of work to get something airtight.

However, maybe you can put together a site that stores these requests and promote it through MetaTalk and your profile.
posted by ignignokt at 11:15 PM on March 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd like someone to do an FPP on me. They'd probably have to build a website to link to first, but that's okay, because I'd like someone to build a website for me as well.
posted by Bookhouse at 11:16 PM on March 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


This won't work, as MeFites don't know what's good for them and thus are constitutionally unable to request the schooling they so desperately require.
posted by Abiezer at 11:17 PM on March 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


OK, I'm on it! Bookmouse.com, right?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:19 PM on March 3, 2008 [2 favorites]


Alvy: good idea. I'll think of it once this idea is ultimately shot down.

Salmonberry: I can totally see the Wikipedia-by-request side. I would hope that it would be less of a request board and more of a jumping off board for other people, too, who may have never thought before about posting about grandfather clocks, but who see this and maybe want to put the time into crafting an FPP foer their research. As part of the community, I would do the same if I saw an idea for an FPP that I liked and wanted to spend time on. I'm not asking for Wikipedia entries, either; FPP's usually have much more personality, are framed for conversational purposes, and so on. I suspect MeFi wouldn't be Wikipedia-ish in how the request would be made, received, and turned around.
posted by not_on_display at 11:19 PM on March 3, 2008


Abiezer: Are you not a MeFite yourself, brother? *dodging fists* hey quit hittin' me!
posted by not_on_display at 11:23 PM on March 3, 2008


This is what I base my supposition on, not_on_display. I've certainly never known what's good for me.
posted by Abiezer at 11:26 PM on March 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


Metatalk: I don't really understand the aggressive criticism here.
posted by flabdablet at 12:58 AM on March 4, 2008


I'd like to see a place where users can submit FPP requests to the general MeFi populace, and where users can respond at their will to said requests.

Ok, the first thing you need to do is figure out a good, available domain name. Then, once you register it, you need to start designing your website. Find a webhost provider -- you probably don't need to go to the trouble of getting a dedicated server -- and upload your web design, integrating the message board software with your design. Then, post a link to Projects, and wait.
posted by Dave Faris at 3:59 AM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


Great, Dave. I expect it by Thursday. You're awesome! Thanks SO much.

No, no, no, wait... I wanted this to be ON MetaFilter! You obviously don't get the "Pony Request" idea of MetaTalk, do you? Uhhh, are you kinda, like, new here? Errrrrrr! OK, Dave, when someone requests a new feature, it's expected that the feature will be implemented on the MetaFilter site itself.

But thanks for offering to do all THAT for me. You're a sweetie, you really are.
posted by not_on_display at 4:54 AM on March 4, 2008


Serendipity is better than homework.
posted by Wolfdog at 5:09 AM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


People on AskMe are like this, people on MeTa are like this, amirite? Y'see, that's because people on MeTa like to throw feces at the bars of their cage, not understanding that some of their shit's gonna be hitting the bars and going right back in the cage, where they eat and sleep... but they don't mind that! Yeah? And the people on AskMe are like, "Uggui wuggi, I can't find my missing socks please help me!" Oh, MAN! You been a great crowd, Carrot Top's coming on stage next, don't forget to drive home drunk, thanks!
posted by not_on_display at 5:14 AM on March 4, 2008


^Bold is better than italics. It makes things true just by typing them.

OK, I don't see how serendipity and homework are mutually exclusive.
posted by not_on_display at 5:16 AM on March 4, 2008


I find that if I wait long enough, someone writes all the FPPs I want to read. That said, it sort of makes no sense for this to be a MeFi feature, but you could definitely colonize some space on the wiki for this.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:11 AM on March 4, 2008


Not a good idea. As the excellent stavros so pithily said,

Serendipity is better than homework.
posted by languagehat at 6:29 AM on March 4, 2008


I would like to know more about the status of James Brown. Is he still dead?
posted by Eideteker at 6:52 AM on March 4, 2008


Naw, I think he paid his five bucks and got a new username.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:04 AM on March 4, 2008


Well, when you put it that way, both in bold and italics, I feel like I have no choice but to agree. And yet, I like this idea, particularly with Jessamyn's suggestion to put it on the wiki.

I'll even provide the first suggestion. I have tried a couple of times now to put together a post on the movie Gymkata. I have this and this, but I feel like it needs a certain something else to really make it work. Who wants to run with my balls! wait, what?
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:25 AM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


This isn't a bad idea. Some folks like making posts more than others and would enjoy the chance to fulfill requests, some wouldn't and could ignore the list. Win-win.

Sounds like a perfectly fine experiment to try on the wiki, or it could work as a metachat thread, too.
posted by mediareport at 7:34 AM on March 4, 2008


not_on_display said: "Great, Dave. I expect it by Thursday. You're awesome! Thanks SO much.

No, no, no, wait... I wanted this to be ON MetaFilter! You obviously don't get the "Pony Request" idea of MetaTalk, do you? Uhhh, are you kinda, like, new here? Errrrrrr! OK, Dave, when someone requests a new feature, it's expected that the feature will be implemented on the MetaFilter site itself.

But thanks for offering to do all THAT for me. You're a sweetie, you really are.
"

I wish there was a flag for "twee as fuck."
posted by pineapple at 7:40 AM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


^[Flagged as "twee as fuck."]
posted by not_on_display at 8:09 AM on March 4, 2008


And that's cool... I'll think poke around the wiki when I haextra time (he said, posting on MeTa) and see what I can brainstorm. I do appreciate that I don't know exactly what I'll find here -- which may be why it probably took me so many years to actually make the connection between the hundred times I googled something and found a MetaFilter post, and actually finally visiting MeFi and finding it had all sorts of shit I didn't even know existed or that I liked. I wouldn't want to rob anyone of that at all.

And thanks for the snark tennis, too. Twee as fuck YOU!
[italics and bold MINE muthafuckaaaaaah!]
posted by not_on_display at 8:17 AM on March 4, 2008


I bet you could do this with blogging software, too.
posted by Dave Faris at 8:18 AM on March 4, 2008


I would be willing to make a post to the blue on any subject of your choice, for a token fee of $100. Paypal accepted at the email address in my profile. (Introductory special: 4-link youtube+wikipedia dump only $50 while offer lasts).
Or you could make your own post, and people who know more awesome stuff about the subject will post that in the comments. That's included in the $5 you already paid. I recommend the deluxe option above, though.
posted by nowonmai at 8:21 AM on March 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


I would like a FPP on either:
posted by blue_beetle at 8:26 AM on March 4, 2008


stavrosthewonderchicken: This is not what Metafilter has ever been for. I am not automatically against change, but I don't think this would be a change in a direction that makes a whole bunch of sense for the site. Serendipity is better than homework.

AMEN, BROTHER.

Miko: Yeah, sometimes the very best way to discover more about a subject that interests you is to try to construct the FPP.

The unfortunate corollary of this is that, all too often, we get FPP's that are collections of search results. It's no different than armchair authorities in AskMe who don't let their lack of knowledge/experience prevent them from chiming in on any given subject.

Having a clearinghouse for FPP requests just further enables it. Because double posts get deleted here, the post you wanted probably is not going to be the one that sticks around.
posted by mkultra at 8:54 AM on March 4, 2008


all too often, we get FPP's that are collections of search results

Yes. Well, I agree that your object should not be to construct a crappy FPP.
posted by Miko at 10:25 AM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


If I get my ass in gear on this, should I announce it in Projects or on MeTa?
posted by not_on_display at 10:46 AM on March 4, 2008


So the point is to request research on a topic that is of interest to you, but not interesting enough to do the research yourself? I'm guessing any research desire could easily be turned into a question on askme. For instance "can anyone tell me about cool-ass 1970-80's commercial product iconography, bonus points for images," or something like that. Then everyone will scour the ends of the internet to answer your question in hopes of the best answer gold star. It's like a distributed FPP. What more do you want?
posted by necessitas at 11:49 AM on March 4, 2008


Something a little less directed, necessitas. I like the green because people are trying to give a "right answer." What I envision is something that doesn't have a "right answer," that people can take in any direction they want. A person's FPP "request" (or whatever), the more open-ended, could yield quite unexpected FPP "answers" -- of different use/entertainment value to whomever views the final result.

In any case, thanks all for your input, even the crossed-arrms-furrowed-brows. I am going to let this idea muck about in my brain for a while.

Also, I've already found some cool "Longcase Clock" sites; now, how to weave them into a cohesive fabric. See? I started this post to gauge if anyone else would be interested in an FPP request system, and already I'm looking into grandfather clocks. My inherent laziness doesn't seem to apply when the idea for a cool FPP hits the brain, whether it's my own idea or not.

Any other requests, so that if I do this, I can compile them wherever they end up compiled?
posted by not_on_display at 12:16 PM on March 4, 2008


FPP on the little-known but very influential R&B scene that thrived in ancient Egypt's Middle Kingdom (11th-14th Dynasties). All I know is that it started when Pharoah Amenemhat the First founded his new royal residence near Memphis.

Extra points for YouTube links with good audio.


Like this?
posted by sleslie at 12:48 PM on March 4, 2008


^Well, combine it with this and this, and add some textual context to it, give it a title like "Coptic, man!" and there you have the beginnings of a beautiful FP, designed with flapjax_at_midnite's request in mind.

Of course, shitty suggestions like flapjax's would be flagged and destroyed immediately, since we here at MetaFilter are a much more (ahem) serious crowd, what what?

What I mean to say, is that flapjax would have constructed something much more kick-ass than what I just slapped up there. But it'd be different that what flapjax was actually looking for or expecting when he filed said request.
posted by not_on_display at 1:56 PM on March 4, 2008


(That is, if flapjax had multiple personality disorder, and his other personality also was a MeFite.)
posted by not_on_display at 1:58 PM on March 4, 2008


You'll eat what's on your plate and like it. What is this, a restaurant?
posted by madamjujujive at 5:43 PM on March 4, 2008


I'll have the Saumon Fumé, the Salade Papillon, and the Agneau à la Dijonnaise. And a bottle of your finest Bordeaux Supérieur.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:51 PM on March 4, 2008


Yeah, and a bottle of your freshest MD 20/20 for me. Whatever flavor is closest to the color blue, thanks. And I'll also have the "Rooty Tooty Fresh and Fruity" and, umm, can you get me a fresh set of silverware? I dropped mine on the floor. Oh? Ha, ha, yes, I know it's not really made of silver!

Oh, I love the ambiance here. So you were saying? Oh, no, madamjujujive, we just call this a restaurant. Welcome to La Ruelle Filtre!

Yes, that waiter did look an awful lot like jonmc, come to think of it! But that's not the point. The point is:
I will eat the plate, and like it, too.
posted by not_on_display at 8:07 PM on March 4, 2008


What the hell is going on in here?
posted by Salmonberry at 10:03 PM on March 4, 2008


Nothin' ma!! We're just talkin'! G'night!
posted by not_on_display at 10:07 PM on March 4, 2008


Don't make me come in there, or you'll be sorry!
posted by dg at 1:19 PM on March 5, 2008


*stifling giggles*

^And hey, blue_beetle, your request is in! -- Does this fit the bill?

I think I'm hallucinating... I wonder how much of MeFi I can control with my thoughts. All I have to do is suggest a pony, and they start to appear?

*shaking medicine* Maybe I should take twice as much next time!
posted by not_on_display at 1:51 PM on March 5, 2008


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